Missouri’s attorney general is moving forward on getting St. Louis Prosecuting Attorney Kim Gardner kicked out of office.
The move is in response to Gardner’s office failing to put a 21-year-old man back in jail for robbery after violating his bond more than 50 times. That man, Daniel Riley, is the suspect in a traffic crash last weekend that cost a Tennessee teenager both of her legs.
Attorney General Andrew Bailey has filed today paperwork to begin removal proceedings through the court system.
“These motions have been filed in the past,” he said. “They are rare and they’re necessarily rare. It is not something that we take lightly. I’m a former prosecutor. I’ve worked at a county prosecutor’s office. I wish that we weren’t at this point today. However, the rule of law and justice demand that action be taken to hold Kim Gardner accountable for her failure to discharge her ethical, moral and legal obligations.”
During a press conference today, Gardner said her office recently requested three times to have the man’s bond revoked. She said the court denied or ignored those requests.
“We have what’s called oral motions to revoke bond,” said Gardner. “Those can be made orally or written. In this jurisdiction, they are made orally and that is normal practice. That was done in this case on numerous occasions. While it is true, my office could have done more, to say we did nothing is (not) only disingenuous and but it’s willfully ignorant of the reality of our court system. My office cannot force a judge to revoke bond for a defendant.”
Bailey said online court records do not reference her requests.
“I disagree with it for a couple of reasons,” said Bailey. “Number one, she’s shifting blame, and it’s a red herring. But also, there are inconsistencies and what she’s saying and what appears in the docket entries in the case she’s referencing,” said Bailey.
Despite mounting public and political pressure, Gardner did not mention plans to step down.
“Our focus is on the recovery of this young woman, Janae Edmondson, and on making sure that the individual actually responsible for what happened to her is held accountable,” she said.
Gardner supporters shouted at times during the news conference.
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